News : Top 10 stories on AROnline in 2020

It’s that time of the year again, so we’re looking back at the Top 10 most popular stories on AROnline in 2020 according to Google Analytics data.

As we’ve done previously, we’re breaking the charts up into categories, so you can see just what news is clicking, as well as the most popular BMC>MGR cars that you like to read about.

AROnline Trends in 2020

Rover SD1

Reflecting the fact that so many people stayed at home in 2020, the readership figures looked pretty good for AROnline throughout the year. But there’s been a general downward trend over time, and what this year has shown is that if there are new and interesting stories, you’re keen to read them.

The reason for this long-term decline in readership lies at the door of a change in your behaviour. With Facebook continuing to take up so much of people’s time online, fewer of you have been leaving it and heading towards specialist websites such as this. That’s okay, because it means I have to keep producing new and interesting stories – as the success of the Memories series so clearly demonstrates.

There’s also been a drop in engagement on AROnline, with commenting rates down, but we have our brilliant regulars, who keep things lively and interesting. This doesn’t reflect falling reader numbers, but perhaps reflects that people are less willing to comment than they used to be. Interesting… Still, there are still lots and lots of you visiting AROnline – around 1.6 million uniques in 2020 – and I for one would like to thank each and every one of you for visiting, and giving me a reason to stay sane in these crazy times.

Top 10 development stories in 2020

Jaguar XJ 2003

  1. Rover SD1 development story
  2. Austin Maxi development story
  3. Jaguar X-Type development story
  4. Austin Allegro development story
  5. Jaguar XJ (X350) development story
  6. Range Rover (P38) development story
  7. MINI (R50) development story
  8. Austin Ambassador development story
  9. Austin Metro development story
  10. Austin Maestro development story

The Rover SD1 continues to pull in the readers in 2020, and that’s despite us not updating this story significantly… proof that BL’s controversial executive fastback still has a myriad of admirers. Jaguar’s done well this year, too, as has Range Rover – a shape of things to come?

Top 10 opinion pieces and blogs in 2020

Austin Allegro hatchback

  1. Opinion : MG Rover – How many left?
  2. Opinion: Austin Allegro hatchback
  3. Opinion: Did Mini cars mean mini profits?
  4. Opinion: Rover’s return?
  5. Opinion: Morris Marina door handles
  6. Opinion: Radio 4 – the Reunion
  7. Opinion: De-scolloping the Maestro
  8. Essay: The bottom line
  9. Opinion: 20 years of MG Rover
  10. Opinion: The strip-speedo years

It looks like the scars of the MG Rover debacle still run deep after all these years…

Top 10 history, archive and concept car stories

  1. Engines: K-Series
  2. Engines: A-Series
  3. BMC>JLR timeline
  4. History: British Leyland – the grand illusion
  5. Concepts and prototypes: Rover P8
  6. Buses: Gardner 6LX diesel engine
  7. Essay: Austin Maestro styling
  8. Concepts and prototypes: Talbot Arizona
  9. Concepts and prototypes: Rover 425 KV6
  10. The cars: Metro-based Maleo

I’m always looking for suggested topics to cover on AROnline, as well as contributions from people who have a tale to tell – be it as an enthusiast, or someone with an inside perspective. Every last piece of information makes the story we’re telling even richer.

Keith Adams

Keith Adams


  1. Facebook – you won’t catch me using that privacy invading and fake news espousing website….

    Part of the issue may be similar to what the boss on Bangers N Cash said about the lack of interest these days in prewar cars – today’s classic cars are now more often 80’s/90’s models as much earlier car enthusiasts go that great scrapyard in the sky. AROnline arguably stops at 2005 so maybe it needs to look at more recent news, eg JLR, Tata, SAIC/MG/Roewe, to maintain interest although that’s not to say that there aren’t older unknown nuggets still to unearth.

    AROnline is regarded as a go to authoritative website (eg the recent photo of long bonnet 25 mules at Gaydon on Twitter) Long may that remain!

  2. I also have NO interest in facebook so AROnline as it is suits me down to the ground. I usually visit the site twice daily and am always interested in what others have to say about the stories featured.

    There’s always something of interest (not just BMC/BL / MG Rover). I have equal interest in Ford & Vauxhall too. So best wishes to all readers and contributors for a better 2021 and thanks to all the team at AROnline…

  3. I have no Interest in Facebook at ALL. Find AR Online very informative, have genuine interest in BL cars. Did my apprenticeship with a BL Main Dealer. I still own some old BL metal, currently looking at upgrading my Marina Coupe to what could have been built using BL parts bin. Keep up the good work here on new and updated stories

    • @Marina Dave. I had a friend who owned a Marina Coupe (K reg) in mid 1970s. I think it was a DL model in khaki green with chrome hubcaps. He looked after it and was usually very clean. Back then I thought it was a decent looking car.

  4. My great aunt had a 1.3 Super Marina Coupe. She loved it, but when they replaced her car and my Great Uncle’s Maxi with a Mk1 Astra she stopped driving, she didn’t like it.

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